Trump Immigration Executive Order: A Muslim Ban? No.

There has been a great deal of fury over Trump’s executive order on refugees in the past few days. If some of these accusations are correct, Trump has become an authoritarian of the highest order. (As an aside, ironically, the people making these claims are some of the most anti-Second Amendment people in America).

First, I wish to clear up one misconception spread throughout the media: THIS IS NOT A MUSLIM BAN. Straight from the executive order itself, here is the first group of people banned:

“To temporarily reduce investigative burdens on relevant agencies during the review period described in subsection (a) of this section, to ensure the proper review and maximum utilization of available resources for the screening of foreign nationals, and to ensure that adequate standards are established to prevent infiltration by foreign terrorists or criminals, pursuant to section 212(f) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1182(f), I hereby proclaim that the immigrant and nonimmigrant entry into the United States of aliens from countries referred to in section 217(a)(12) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1187(a)(12), would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, and I hereby suspend entry into the United States, as immigrants and nonimmigrants, of such persons for 90 days from the date of this order (excluding those foreign nationals traveling on diplomatic visas, North Atlantic Treaty Organization visas, C-2 visas for travel to the United Nations, and G-1, G-2, G-3, and G-4 visas).”

These are individuals from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen. Not anything close to a “Muslim ban.”

The second group of people that are banned:

“The Secretary of State shall suspend the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP) for 120 days. During the 120-day period, the Secretary of State, in conjunction with the Secretary of Homeland Security and in consultation with the Director of National Intelligence, shall review the USRAP application and adjudication process to determine what additional procedures should be taken to ensure that those approved for refugee admission do not pose a threat to the security and welfare of the United States, and shall implement such additional procedures. Refugee applicants who are already in the USRAP process may be admitted upon the initiation and completion of these revised procedures. Upon the date that is 120 days after the date of this order, the Secretary of State shall resume USRAP admissions only for nationals of countries for which the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Homeland Security, and the Director of National Intelligence have jointly determined that such additional procedures are adequate to ensure the security and welfare of the United States.”

This means that all refugees, regardless of where they came from, are currently banned from enrolling in the refugee program for 120 days. This is where things get dicey. Again, this is not a Muslim ban. This suspends all refugees: Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Atheists, members of the Baha’i faith, etc. However, this does mean that the Yazidis in Iraq cannot come to America for 120 days. This puts their lives in grave danger. This happened the last time a ban on refugees was placed in 2011. An Iraqi who helped the US as a translator in the Iraq War was assassinated during the 6-month period during which the US suspended said refugees.

You may draw your own conclusions about the morality of this executive order or even whether or not the President has this authority. However, this temporary suspension of refugees/most individuals from certain countries, while controversial, is clearly no Muslim ban.


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